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Yanbu’ Refinery earns international accolades for flare optimization



Saudi Aramco’s Yanbu’ Refinery Department (YRD) recently won the prestigious International Green Apple Environment Award for its one-of-a-kind initiative “YRD Flare Optimization by 57%.” The award marks the first time a department in Saudi Aramco has won the award.

The initiative was evaluated thoroughly by Green Apple subject matter experts and was ranked by judges as the third best environmental best practice implemented in 2017.

Winning an International Green Apple Environment Award for 2017 is aligned with YRD’s vision to become a model refinery by 2020 through the implementation of new technologies and initiatives, thereby enhancing its environmental, energy, and financial portfolios.

The Green Apple Environmental Award Program is organized by the Green Organization, which is considered the most prestigious international, independent, nonpolitical, and nonprofit environmental platform in the world. The organization’s main focus is on promoting, rewarding, and sharing best practices for both industrial and non-industrial environmental activities.

Flare optimization

The flare optimization initiative was achieved by constructing a new jump-over line connecting the normal flare to the sour flare header, and building a control logic to govern the purge gas process between the two flare headers. This has contributed to reducing YRD’s total purge gas rate dramatically from 340 million standard cubic feet per year down to 192 million standard cubic feet per year, which has translated to a revenue generation of $650,000 annually.

Furthermore, this initiative has also contributed in limiting the YRD emissions footprint by a total reduction in sulfur oxide and nitrogen oxide emissions of 4,500 kilograms (kg)/year, and 6,000 kg/year, respectively.

Winning a Green Apple Award is another demonstration of our commitment to implement and maintain best environmental practices, and in line with the global trend of reducing harmful emissions in the refining industry.

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